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Children’s Hearings Scotland | Summary Annual Report 2011/12

Summary Annual Report 2011/12 Children’s Hearings Scotland (CHS) is a new non-departmental public body set up as a result of the Children’s Hearings (Scotland) Act 2011. Although CHS was set up in July 2011, the Act will not come into force until June 2013. This means that CHS was a shadow body during the period of reporting for this annual report (April 2011 to March 2012). The main focus of this year was on building the foundations of CHS and preparing for the implementation of the Act.

The Act ●

Why these changes?

These changes are driven by the desire to build on the best aspects of the current arrangements:

creates the role of National Convener, to act as a figurehead for Scotland’s 2,700 volunteer panel members and ensure they are consistently supported to a high standard

creates a national body, Children’s Hearings Scotland, to support the National Convener with the recruitment, selection, appointment, training, retention and support of panel members empowers the National Convener to establish a national Children’s Panel empowers the National Convener to establish Area Support Teams (ASTs), with the consent of each local authority, to be responsible for managing and supporting the national panel at local level

g Establishin New corporate identity Recruitment

HR/Finance shared services


CHS vision Procedures


IT equipment

to improve outcomes for children and young people to make sure that the voice and experience of the child or young person is at the centre of every hearing to make sure that the rights of everyone at the hearing are upheld and respected

The ethos of the system and role of the three panel members, who sit on each hearing to consider the best interests of the child or young person before them, will not change.


National standards

CHS values

to create an improved and more effective Children’s Hearings System that provides greater consistency across Scotland


CHS mission


Off ice space


Policies Corporate planning

Our first year

Our mission: to improve outcomes and experiences for children and

young people in Scotland who may be at risk. We will do this by supporting the Children’s Panel, working with partners and using our influence to drive improvements across the Children’s Hearings System.

April 2011 to March 2012


Our vision: a Children’s Hearings System where everyone works together, making sure that all children and young people are heard, respected, valued, cared for and protected.

July Board members appointed

Involving children and young people

Communicating and engaging with stakeholders

Supporting panel and AST members Preparing for go live in June 2013

National standards works hops Glasgow 6 Edinburgh 3 Kilmarnock 1 Inverness 2 Dundee 2 Orkney 1 Aberdeen 2 Dumfries 1 People consulted 497

Establishing governance arrangements

in g ak of M st f mo taf e s h t ur o

Working with partners and stakeholders

First CHS Board meeting

May - June National Convener began developing relationships with key par tners Discussions around ASTs began with local authorities


AST consultation published


First meeting of Remuneration and Appointments Committee

Corporate plan submitted to Minister

First meeting of Audit and Risk Management Committee



#1 Staf f recruit ment

Board recruitment process began

START Ap ril 2011 Bernadette M onaghan took up post of National Con vener Craig Spence took up post of Ch air

AST consultati on closed

c o n AS T s ul r e p t atio n pub o r t li s h ed

#2 Staf f recruit ment January 2012 National standards consultation published Staff moved into CHS head office, Edinburgh



Staff £221,000

The total CHS budget for the year was Training & recruitment Shared services £750,000. £56,000 £76,000 We spent £528,000 Legal fees £36,000 of this:

Kit Wyeth seconded to CHS as Project Manager

AST information packs sent to all local authorities Consultation on new corporate identity


Running costs £76,000





Advice to hearings project started

rd Boa oved r app porate Cor lan P

CHS mission, vision and values signed off Scoping work on panel member training started Detailed discussions commenced with local authorities around the formation of ASTs

Children’s Hearings Scotland | Summary Annual Report 2011/12


CHS has a Board of five people including the Chair. All the Board members were appointed in 2011 for a period of three years. The Board sets strategic direction and provides governance and challenge to CHS and is accountable to Scottish Ministers. Our Board members are: ● Craig

Spence, Chair

Alastair Hamilton

● Brian


Andrew Thin

● Linda


Three of our Board members have previously served as panel members.

Craig Spence

d exciting an anisation is rg o w e s n a a Sh “Starting t year at CH and the firs g in g to be n d e lle a g h ile c feel priv I . th o b n e e ll of certainly b which is fu rganisation o is th about f o te a rt pa passion re a o h w le eop l and dedicated p ren’s Pane ort the Child p p g u s to yo g n and un workin s for childre e m o tc t u e o m e improve mbers I hav e panel me inspire to e people. Th u n try conti n u o c e th s nt from acros e exciteme dy me for th ” r. a ye me and rea g omin ges of the c and challen

“Our first ye ar held a n umber of c for both CH hallenges S and me p ersonally. I touched by was the kindne ss that was me private shown to ly during a difficult pe people’s co riod and by ncern for m e. A numbe activities w r of critical ere comple ted during as the recru the year, su itment of a ch fantastic s extensive c taff team a onsultation n d with the pa about the s nel commu hape of AS n ity, Ts and the standards national in particula r. These ac helped esta tivities hav blish the fo e u ndations o us in a stro f CHS and ng position p ut fo r the future forward an , as we mo d play our ve part in the modernisa Scotland’s tion of Children’s Hearings S ystem.”


At the end of the 2011/12 year, CHS had eight permanent members of staff. This included Bernadette Monaghan the National Convener and Chief Executive, who has also previously served as a panel member. As Chief Executive, Bernadette has responsibility for the management of CHS. As National Convener, Bernadette is responsible for supporting Scotland’s 2,700 volunteer panel members. Bernadette took up the post in April 2011 and was appointed for a period of five years. CHS’ Senior Management Team (SMT) has responsibility for the day to day management of operational functions and staff. In addition to the National Convener, members of the SMT are: ●

Bernadette Monaghan

Alison Gough, Director of Panel and Area Support Fiona Greig, Director of Finance and Corporate Services Kit Wyeth, Project Manager

Bernadette Monaghan was temporarily suspended by the CHS Board in December 2011, following allegations made. After a thorough investigation concluding in March 2012, the allegations were dismissed and the suspension lifted. Kit Wyeth was seconded to CHS in December 2011 as Project Manager, at the request of CHS, to provide support during this time.

Children’s Hearings Scotland Area 2/1/1 Ladywell House Ladywell Road | Edinburgh | EH12 7TB t: 0131 244 3696 f: 0131 244 4745

The Children’s Panel – life changing.

This publication has not been printed to save paper. However, if you require a printed copy or a copy in an alternative format and/or language, please contact us to discuss your needs. This document forms part of a suite of documents which also includes CHS Annual Accounts 2011/12 and National Convener Annual Report 2011/12. All can be found on our website.

CHS Summary Annual report 2011/12